Thursday, June 16, 2016

DIY Magnetic Picture Frame (to easily change out your kids' artwork!)

It's summer over here, and I am fortunate in that I don't have to worry about the girls getting too much screen time. They're both pretty self-sufficient,  and while I'm sure they'd love to spend all day in front of the TV/Computer/iPad/AnyScreenYouCanThinkOf, it's not hard to give them a short timeframe and then have them turn off what they're doing and get to doing something creative.

The Big Kid loves to make machines out of popsicle sticks and hot glue (think catapults and trebuchets), while the little one... Well, she likes to draw/color/paint/glue/cut.... General craft stuff.

And When she's finished with it, she wants to hang it up.

ALL. Of. It.

It's leading to so many holes in the walls of her room that I finally, Wednesday morning, put my foot down. It looked ridiculous in there.

So I made her these!

They're pieces of discarded vinyl blinds, held together by magnets. Changing the pieces out is so simple, and the best part? No more holes in the wall!

Well, I guess the best part is that you can make them, too. Out of pretty much anything you've got (1x2s, rulers, paint stirrers, leather straps... pretty much anything that'll hold it's shape at short lengths). To do it, here's whatcha need.

*Frame Material - I used vinyl blinds
*Way To Cut Frame Material - I used a box cutter
*Magnets (8 per frame)

*Framer's Square
*Marking tool (pen)

To begin, decide on the length you want your frames to be. I made mine 12", because that will hold 8.5x11" paper, and construction paper in landscape orientation. You'll need four pieces for each frame.

Mark and cut your lengths. I used my square to guide the box cutter, pressing firmly. If you're using vinyl blinds for this like I did, it's best to cut all the way through with the box cutter (so you should put something underneath it to protect the blade from cutting into concrete... I didn't). If you make a shallow cut and then bend it (TEMPTING!), it doesn't come out nicely.

The back is scribed/bent, the front is cut all the way through with the box cutter (which really only takes 2-3 cuts, so it doesn't save any time to not cut through it).

After you've your frame pieces, mark one piece per frame to drill the rope into (so if you're doing only one frame, you'll only drill into one piece).

I measured 1" in on both sides, and stacked all three of my pieces (because I did three frames) and drilled through all three.

Okay, here is where I usually end up ruining frames. I SUCK at making the ropes equal, so I either have to hold them level, and then hammer in uneven places on the wall to get them to hang level, or if I hammer the nails even, the frames are uneven.


So I've started tying the first side of the rope in the hole, and then measuring the same length for each rope, and tying the other side near that length.

Here, I measured from the knot on the right out 12" and marked the rope. I cut the rope, leaving a few extra inches to help tie the knot, and started tying the knot so that the mark was right by the knot on the other side.

This, and the evenly drilled holes, made it to where my ropes were all the same length! It may not seem like much, but it's something that I struggled with BIG TIME.

Now it's time to glue the magnets on.


Um... make sure that the magnets have their magnetic sides facing. I mean, triple check.. Because pulling off magnets to turn them around is no bueno. Also no fun. Not that I'd know.

To get mine evenly spaced (and to make sure the magnetic sides were facing), I stuck them together and hot glued one side onto the back "frame". Then I added hot glue to the top of the other magnet, and placed the other frame on top, lining it up with the bottom frame.

Now you'll have the top and bottom of your frame!

To insert the art, first, hang the top piece with the rope-piece closest too the wall, and take the front piece off.

Next, position the bottom pieces on the bottom of the picture, leaving an even amount of space on each side.

Finally, position the art in front of the top wall piece, and place the front of the frame, securing the art between the magnets.

And there you have it!

This is The Big Kid's art from this previous school year <3

Super simple frames that make changing the pieces.... super simple!


Glue the magnets toward the middle of the frame a bit so that you can hang smaller pieces of art than the frames.

The art has to be secured between the magnets.

If you're using heavy material to make the frame from, you will either need stronger magnets, or additional magnets. This also applies if you're hanging heavier pieces.


I love this more modern take on hanging kids art (versus a clothespins or cork boards), and think I may be trying it to hang some pieces that I haven't bought frames for yet!

Do you think this is something you could use in your house?


  1. Great idea! This is so easy to make and very useful. I think I it would be good to hang notes on. Thanks for sharing.

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